Your busy day might leave little time for introspection. When on those rare occasions on which you do find time to meditate, you may have doubts about who it is you’re connecting with when you do. Is it safe to listen? Or are those voices in your head a symptom of insanity?
Concerns like these are normal! Film and TV constantly relays the notion that inner voices in your head tell you bad things, and urge you to do bad things, and so should never be considered as valid advice.
The key is to listen to what the voice is saying to you.
Is it berating with a tone of condescension? Is it reminding you of all the mistakes you’ve made over the years? Is it spiteful? Or is it kind, and gentle? Do you feel comforted when you hear it? Does it inspire something in you?
The tone and content of the message indicates which part of the vast YOU you’re currently connected with.
There is a process that will bypass the negative talk, and clear the path of communication to that inner guide that wants to see you succeed in this physical life.
You’ve heard it a million times, I know. “Take several deep breaths.” It’s the beginning of every meditation and initiates every yoga practice.
Do you ever skip that step?
I bet that there have been times when you, in a stationary race against time, sat down to meditate and you glossed over the breathing part to get right to the good stuff.
If this is you, then you may not be fully connecting with your Higher Self. And that “good stuff” you were aiming for, can be replaced by a barrage of negative talk and a cyclone of unwelcome thoughts. It’s no wonder that many people fail to establish a regular meditation practice.
There is a reason that breath is included prior to these practices. Because it opens the pathway to Source. Not just figuratively, but literally.
Breathing has both physical and energetic benefits. Not only are you oxygenating your organs, but you are also opening a clear conduit to your Higher Self that, in most people, the ego blocks by default.
The ego is an important part of our physical existence. A key element in maintaining the time/space physical reality in which we live, the ego is the looking glass through which we view this Earthly illusion. So if you are having negative thoughts as you meditate, then continue breathing until the negative talk subsides. Here is the inbuilt benefit from breathing that applies to all of us:
Your ego is designed to move to the background when you focus on controlled breathing.
This is when your Higher Self has a chance to be heard. This voice may sound like your own, or like your favorite grandfather (alive or not), or perhaps like no one you have ever heard before.
And this voice will never, ever, ever, ever, be harsh. It will never degrade you. It will never urge you to do—or even think about—harm to another. It will have your, and all others’, best interest in mind.
Should you be hearing otherwise, then continue breathing. Breathe longer than you think you should. Focus on each breath, until the calm settles over you.
Try ten deep breaths. That may be more than you’ve ever done in one stretch before. The idea is to get beyond the mind fidgets, and to clear the path for communication with Source.
Once you notice the subtle changes in your thought patterns, and feel your body relax, then it’s time to begin the dialogue with your Higher Self. Ask it for direction and feedback about how you are doing. Is there anything that can make this journey easier? More fun? More rewarding?
The You behind the curtain will always be there for gentle, positive guidance. This is the You that wants to see you succeed. The trusted coach, the loving guide. The information you receive will sit well in your gut, which has its own brain, by the way.
No matter where you are on in your personal evolution, controlled breathing will always validate your connection to your Higher Self. So please, take the time to clear your channels by putting the ego to sleep for a time. I’ve listed some resources below on breathing techniques in case you’d like to learn more.
I think you’ll find great rewards waiting inside of you.
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Learning the Ujjai breath (my favorite).